Why do dyspeptic patients over the age of 50 consult their general practitioner? A qualitative investigation of health beliefs relating to dyspepsia.
BACKGROUND: The prognosis of late-diagnosed gastric cancer is poor, yet less than half of dyspeptic patients consult their general practitioner (GP). AIM: To construct an explanatory model of the decision to consult with dyspepsia in older patients. METHOD: A total of 75 patients over the age of 50 years who had consulted with dyspepsia at one of two inner city general practices were invited to an in-depth interview. The interviews were taped, transcribed, and analysed using the computer software NUD.IST, according to the principles of grounded theory. RESULTS: Altogether, 31 interviews were conducted. The perceived threat of cancer and the need for reassurance were key influences on the decision to consult. Cues such as a change in symptoms were important in prompting a re-evaluation of the likely cause. Personal vulnerability to serious illness was often mentioned in the context of family or friends' experience, but tempered by an individual's life expectations. CONCLUSION: Most patients who had delayed consultation put their symptoms down to 'old age' or 'spicy food'. However, a significant minority were fatalistic, suspecting the worst but fearing medical interventions. (+info)
The one-stop dyspepsia clinic--an alternative to open-access endoscopy for patients with dyspepsia.
The most sensitive investigative tool for the upper gastrointestinal tract is endoscopy, and many gastroenterologists offer an open-access endoscopy service to general practitioners. However, for patients with dyspepsia, endoscopy is not always the most appropriate initial investigation, and the one-stop dyspepsia clinic allows for different approaches. We have audited, over one year, the management and outcomes of patients attending a one-stop dyspepsia clinic. All patients seen in the clinic were included, and for those not endoscoped the notes were reviewed one year after the end of the study to check for reattendances and diagnoses originally missed. Patients' and general practitioners' views of the service were assessed by questionnaire. 485 patients were seen, of whom 301 (62%) were endoscoped at first attendance. In 66 patients (14%), endoscopy was deemed inappropriate and only one of these returned subsequently for endoscopy. 118 patients (24%) were symptom-free when seen in the clinic and were asked to telephone for an appointment if and when symptoms recurred; half of these returned and were endoscoped. Oesophagitis and duodenal ulcer were significantly more common in this 'telephone endoscopy' group than in those endoscoped straight from the clinic. Overall, 25% of patients referred were not endoscoped. Important additional diagnoses were made from the clinic consultation. General practitioners and patients valued the system, in particular the telephone endoscopy service. 84% of general practitioners said they would prefer the one-stop dyspepsia clinic to open-access endoscopy. (+info)
Validation of a specific quality of life questionnaire for functional digestive disorders.
BACKGROUND: Dyspepsia and irritable bowel syndrome are suitable conditions for assessment of quality of life. Their similarities justify the elaboration of a single specific questionnaire for the two conditions. AIMS: To examine the process leading to the validation of the psychometric properties of the functional digestive disorders quality of life questionnaire (FDDQL). METHODS: Initially, the questionnaire was given to 154 patients, to assess its acceptability and reproducibility, analyse its content, and reduce the number of items. Its responsiveness was tested during two therapeutic trials which included 428 patients. The questionnaire has been translated into French, English, and German. The psychometric validation study was conducted in France, United Kingdom, and Germany by 187 practitioners. A total of 401 patients with dyspepsia or irritable bowel syndrome, defined by the Rome criteria, filled in the FDDQL and generic SF-36 questionnaires. RESULTS: The structure of the FDDQL scales was checked by factorial analysis. Its reliability was expressed by a Cronbach's alpha coefficient of 0.94. Assessment of its discriminant validity showed that the more severe the functional digestive disorders, the more impaired the quality of life (p<0.05). Concurrent validity was supported by the correlation found between the FDDQL and SF-36 questionnaire scales. The final version of the questionnaire contains 43 items belonging to eight domains. CONCLUSIONS: The properties of the FDDQL questionnaire, available in French, English, and German, make it appropriate for use in clinical trials designed to evaluate its responsiveness to treatment among patients with dyspepsia and irritable bowel syndrome. (+info)
Relationship between mucosal levels of Helicobacter pylori-specific IgA, interleukin-8 and gastric inflammation.
Mucosal IgA is important in local immune defence. Helicobacter pylori induces a specific IgA response in antral mucosa, but its immunopathology is unknown. Interleukin-8 (IL-8) has been suggested to be important in H. pylori-induced inflammation. Current information on the relationship between H. pylori-induced IgA and mucosal inflammation is limited. To investigate possible associations between mucosal-specific IgA, the toxinogenicity of H. pylori, mucosal levels of IL-8 and gastric inflammation, 52 endoscoped patients were studied. These comprised 28 patients with peptic ulcer and 24 with non-ulcer dyspepsia. Of these patients, 38 had H. pylori infection: 28 with peptic ulcer and 10 with non-ulcer dyspepsia. Antral biopsies were taken for histology, H. pylori culture and measurement of mucosal levels of IL-8 (pg/mg) and specific IgA (A450x1000) by ELISA. Mucosal H. pylori IgA was detectable in 35 out of 38 patients with H. pylori infection, with a median (interquartile) level of 220 (147, 531) units. There was no significant difference in mucosal levels of the IgA antibodies between patients infected with cytotoxin-positive or cagA-positive strains of H. pylori and those with toxin-negative or cagA-negative strains. The IgA levels in those patients with severe neutrophil infiltration were lower than in those with mild or moderate infiltration (P<0.05). There was a weak inverse correlation between antral mucosal IgA and IL-8 in infected patients (r=-0.36; P=0.04). H. pylori infection induced a significant local mucosal IgA response in most infected patients. The level of IgA antibodies does not appear to be correlated with the toxinogenicity of H. pylori. However, patients with severe active inflammation appear to have decreased levels of IgA. An inverse correlation between mucosal IL-8 and IgA may suggest that IL-8-induced inflammation compromises the mucosal IgA defence and renders the mucosa susceptible to further damage. (+info)
Eradication of Helicobacter pylori in functional dyspepsia: randomised double blind placebo controlled trial with 12 months' follow up. The Optimal Regimen Cures Helicobacter Induced Dyspepsia (ORCHID) Study Group.
OBJECTIVES: To determine whether eradication of Helicobacter pylori relieves the symptoms of functional dyspepsia. DESIGN: Multicentre randomised double blind placebo controlled trial. SUBJECTS: 278 patients infected with H pylori who had functional dyspepsia. SETTING: Predominantly secondary care centres in Australia, New Zealand, and Europe. INTERVENTION: Patients randomised to receive omeprazole 20 mg twice daily, amoxicillin 1000 mg twice daily, and clarithromycin 500 mg twice daily or placebo for 7 days. Patients were followed up for 12 months. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Symptom status (assessed by diary cards) and presence of H pylori (assessed by gastric biopsies and 13C-urea breath testing using urea labelled with carbon-13). RESULTS: H pylori was eradicated in 113 patients (85%) in the treatment group and 6 patients (4%) in the placebo group. At 12 months follow up there was no significant difference between the proportion of patients treated successfully by intention to treat in the eradication arm (24%, 95% confidence interval 17% to 32%) and the proportion of patients treated successfully by intention to treat in the placebo group (22%, 15% to 30%). Changes in symptom scores and quality of life did not significantly differ between the treatment and placebo groups. When the groups were combined, there was a significant association between treatment success and chronic gastritis score at 12 months; 41/127 (32%) patients with no or mild gastritis were successfully treated compared with 21/123 (17%) patients with persistent gastritis (P=0. 008). CONCLUSION: No convincing evidence was found that eradication of H pylori relieves the symptoms of functional dyspepsia 12 months after treatment. (+info)
Serum gastrin and chromogranin A during medium- and long-term acid suppressive therapy: a case-control study.
BACKGROUND: Serum chromogranin A (CgA) is regarded as a reliable marker of neuroendocrine proliferation. We previously described increased serum CgA levels during short-term profound gastric acid inhibition. AIM: To investigate serum gastrin and CgA levels in dyspeptic patients during continuous medium- (6 weeks to 1 year), or long-term (1-8 years) gastric acid suppressive therapy. PATIENTS AND METHODS: 114 consecutive dyspeptic patients referred for upper gastrointestinal endoscopy were enrolled in a cross-sectional, case-control study [62 patients on continuous antisecretory therapy, either with proton pump inhibitors (n = 47) or H2-receptor antagonists (H2RA) (n = 15) for gastro-oesophageal reflux disease with or without Barrett's oesophagus or functional dyspepsia, and 52 age- and sex-matched patients without medical acid inhibition and with normal endoscopic findings (control group)]. Omeprazole doses ranged from 20 mg to 80 mg daily and ranitidine from 150 mg to 450 mg daily. Fasting serum CgA and serum gastrin levels were measured by radioimmunoassay (reference values: serum CgA < 4.0 nmol/L; serum gastrin < 85 ng/L). RESULTS: Fasting serum CgA levels positively correlated with serum gastrin in the entire study population (r = 0. 55, P = 0.0001). Median serum CgA values were higher in patients treated with a proton pump inhibitor than H2RA [2.8 (2.0-5.9) nmol/L vs. 2 (1.9-2.3) nmol/L, P < 0.002] and controls [2.8 (2.0-5.9) nmol/L vs. 1.8 (1.5-2.2) nmol/L, P < 0.0001) and did not differ between patients treated with H2RA or controls. Serum gastrin and CgA levels in patients on proton pump inhibitor therapy positively correlated with the degree and duration of acid inhibition. Patients on long-term proton pump inhibitor therapy had significantly higher fasting serum gastrin and CgA than those on medium-term proton pump inhibitor therapy [127 (73-217) ng/L vs. 49 (29-78) ng/L, P < 0.0001 and 4.8 (2.8-8) ng/L vs. 2.1 (1.9-2.6) ng/L, P < 0.001]. No such relation was found in patients on medium- vs. long-term H2RA. Overall, patients with positive Helicobacter pylori serology had higher serum gastrin and CgA levels than those with negative H. pylori serology [51 (27-119) ng/L vs. 27 (14-79) ng/L, P = 0.01, 2.4 (1.9-3.4) nmol/L vs. 2.0 (1.7-2.5) nmol/L, P = 0.05]. CONCLUSIONS: During long-term continuous proton pump inhibitor treatment, serum gastrin and CgA levels are significantly elevated compared to H2RA treatment and nontreated dyspeptic controls. H. pylori infection seems to affect gastric ECL cell secretory function. Increased serum CgA values during long-term profound gastric acid inhibition could reflect either gastric enterochromaffin-like cell hyperfunction or proliferative changes. (+info)
Development of a new dyspepsia impact scale: the Nepean Dyspepsia Index.
BACKGROUND: There is not at present a suitable disease-specific health-related quality of life instrument for uninvestigated dyspepsia and functional (non-ulcer) dyspepsia. AIM: To develop a new multi-dimensional disease-specific instrument. METHODS: The Nepean Dyspepsia Index (NDI) was designed to measure impairment of a subject's ability to engage in relevant aspects of their life and also their enjoyment of these aspects; in addition, the individual importance of each aspect is assessed. A 42-item quality of life measure was developed and tested, both in out-patients presenting to general practice with upper gastrointestinal complaints (n = 113) and in a randomly chosen population-based sample (n = 347). RESULTS: Adequate face and content validity was documented by an expert panel. Factor analysis identified four clinically relevant subscales: interference with activities of daily living, work, enjoyment of life and emotional well-being; lack of knowledge and control over the illness; disturbance to eating or drinking; and disturbance to sleep because of dyspepsia. These scales had high internal consistency. Both symptoms and the quality of life scores discriminated dyspepsia from health. CONCLUSION: The Nepean Dyspepsia Index is a reliable and valid disease-specific index for dyspepsia, measuring symptoms and health-related quality of life. (+info)
Furazolidone-containing short-term triple therapies are effective in the treatment of Helicobacter pylori infection.
BACKGROUND: A furazolidone-containing therapeutic regimen for Helicobacter pylori infection has attracted special interest in the face of a rising world-wide metronidazole resistant H. pylori, and the expense of currently used antimicrobial regimens. AIM: To evaluate the efficacy of furazolidone-containing regimens in eradicating H. pylori. METHODS: One-hundred and forty H. pylori positive patients with endoscopically confirmed duodenal ulcer or functional dyspepsia received one of four different regimens to eradicate H. pylori. In the first trial, the patients were randomly assigned to receive a 1-week course of furazolidone 100 mg b.d. and clarithromycin 250 mg b.d., with either tripotassium dicitrato bismuthate (TDB) 240 mg b.d. (FCB group) or lansoprazole 30 mg daily (FCL group). In the second trial, the patients were randomly assigned to receive a 1-week course of clarithromycin 250 mg b.d. and omeprazole 20 mg daily, with either furazolidone 100 mg b.d. (FCO group) or metronidazole 400 mg b.d. (MCO group). Endoscopy was repeated 4 weeks following completion of therapy with re-assessment of H. pylori status on gastric biopsies by histology and culture. RESULTS: Four patients (1 in FCB, 1 in FCO and 2 in MCO groups) dropped out because they refused a follow-up endoscopy. Eradication rates of H. pylori on an intention-to-treat basis in the FCB, FCL, FCO and MCO groups were 91% (32/35, 95% CI: 82-99%), 91% (32/35, CI: 82-99%), 86% (30/35, CI: 74-97%) and 74% (26/35, CI: 60-89%) (all P > 0.05), respectively. Mild side-effects occurred in 15% of the 140 patients. In MCO group, the eradication rate in the patients infected with metronidazole-sensitive isolates of H. pylori was 86%, but dropped to 67% in those with metronidazole-resistance strains (P = 0.198). CONCLUSION: One-week regimens containing furazolidone and clarithromycin in combination with TDB or a proton pump inhibitor fulfil the criteria for successful H. pylori therapy. (+info)